On Thursday, adidas gave the public a first look at its new Ultra Boost running shoe.
In the latest version of the Boost, the midsole consists entirely of Boost material, an expanded thermoplastic polyurethane meant to improve a runner's energy return. In the previous model, the Energy Boost 2.0, the midsole was 80 percent Boost and 20 percent EVA foam.
adidas claims the change makes Ultra Boost their most responsive running shoe to date. "The Boost midsole material is about 3,000 independent cells, and they all move independently of each other," said Adrian Leek, the brand's global senior vice president of running. "We looked to construct an outsole that would move with the cells."
The Boost cells look kind of like Styrofoam, but they're much more durable. The pellets feel soft yet responsive. The outsole, or bottom of the shoe, is made with adidas's new Stretch Web construction, which is perforated and elastic and designed to move in sync with the Boost midsole. The upper is seamless and made of spandex, which is meant to expand with your forefoot as it strikes the ground.
adidas says their wear tests indicate that the Ultra Boost makes runners up to one percent more efficient. This may not seem like a big deal, but it equates to a two-minute improvement at the finish time of a four-hour marathoner.
Among the athletes on the scene for the release was Buffalo Bills wide receiver Sammy Watkins, who said he liked the Ultra Boost's simplicity and responsiveness.
"In shoes I've trained in before that are stiff, or even with plastic that kind of lifts up, you have to push down and then jump to get going. It's like you waste an extra movement," said Watkins. "With this shoe, it's balanced out. I can use just about every toe."
adidas Ultra Boost will be available for purchase on Feb. 11. You can find it at adidas.com and many retailers nationwide for $180.
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